National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women
ORILLIA – A candlelight vigil was held today at the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Headquarters, paying tribute to the 14 women who were murdered at École Polytechnique de Montreal, as well as each and every woman in Ontario whose lives have been harmed or lost to gender-based violence.
Attendees heard from guest speaker Priscilla de Villiers. De Villiers is the co-founder and executive director of the Victim Justice Network (VJN) where her work has had a pivotal role in raising public awareness, sharing accurate information and promoting trauma-informed research and resources for victims of crime in Canada.
The OPP is committed to working with various community partners and victim support agencies, such as Ontario Victim Services. These services provide victims with short-term immediate counselling, emergency expenses, transportation, accommodations and other supports.
In August of this year, the OPP released a Victim Response Support Strategy that outlines the actions the OPP is taking to improve the response to and support for victims. This includes providing more resources and training to OPP investigators and creating new roles and functions to strengthen victim support.
Gender based violence facts:
- Women are at a 20 per cent higher risk of violent victimization than men when all other risk factors are taken into account.*
- Young women between the ages of 15 and 24 experience the highest rates of violence.*
- Indigenous women are more than three times as likely to report being a victim of spousal violence as non-Indigenous women.*
- Women living in the territories are victimized at a rate eight times higher than those living in the provinces.*
(*) – Source: Government of Canada
“It is imperative that the OPP continues to work with and build relationships with our community and regional partners to ensure that all victims are informed, protected and supported”
– Ontario Provincial Police Commissioner J.V.N. (Vince) HAWKES
OPP Victim Response Support Strategy